How to prioritize your health during social isolation
We’re all getting tired of being quarantined, but now is not the time to give in. As you continue to practice smart social isolation, make sure you’re also practicing smart habits that prioritize your health.
6 Healthy Tips for Quarantine
Social isolation isn’t easy on anyone. Introverts and extroverts alike are growing weary of the current set of circumstances. But if there were ever a time to fight for your health, it’s now. Your biggest priority should be to maintain proper physical and mental health during this trying time.
Here are a few practical suggestions:
Be Smart With Sleep
Sleep has and always will be one of the key ingredients to stable mental and physical health. Unfortunately, this COVID-19 crisis has disrupted sleep habits for millions of people worldwide. If this is true in your case, it’s time to be more proactive about your shuteye.
If you’re struggling with anxiety that makes it difficult to fall asleep or stay asleep, do the following:
- Practice relaxation techniques like meditation and breathing exercises prior to bedtime.
- Limit your intake of caffeine, alcohol, and nicotine during the day.
- Avoid blue light in the bedroom. For best results, don’t use any screens in the 60 minutes leading up to bedtime.
It’s also important that you maintain a proper sleep routine. Too much sleep can be just as detrimental to your wellbeing as not enough sleep. Try to go to bed and wake up within the same 30-minute window every day.
You are what you eat. So as tempting as it is to order delivery or consume a buffet of frozen delicacies every evening, you need to be mindful of your diet.
According to Harvard.edu, some good anxiety-reducing, immunity-boosting foods include: citrus fruits, red bell peppers, ginger, garlic, turmeric, oysters, clams, beef, egg yolks, legumes, seeds, nuts, leafy greens, whole grains, salmon, pickles, and other food items that are rich in vitamin C, zinc, magnesium, omega-3 fatty acids, probiotics, and antioxidants.
Get Daily Exercise
You need to get daily exercise – enough to elevate your heart rate for at least two different 30-minute segments throughout the day.
If at all possible, try getting your exercise outside. Whether this means doing an aerobics workout on your back patio or taking a three-mile jog around the neighborhood, try to get out! This is good for both your physical and mental health.
Address Underlying Health Concerns
Now is a great time to address any underlying health concerns or chronic issues that you’ve been dealing with over the past few months or years.
Aging is a great example. If you’re balding, you could use this is an opportunity to try low-level laser light therapy to begin regrowing hair. If you’re worried about your skin, a micro-roller could help you generate smoother, younger looking skin.
Or maybe you have chronic digestion problems. This would be a great time to try an elimination diet where you figure out where your sensitivities are coming from.
Don’t miss the opportunity to care for your health while you have the time and space in your schedule to do so.
Times are stressful. Whether you’re worried about getting sick, have lost a job, are struggling to make financial ends meet, or are fighting loneliness and depression, you can benefit from being more expressive with your thoughts and feelings.
Avoid bottling up your emotions! Take the time to express yourself through journaling, music, poetry, art, or whatever it is that makes you tick.
Avoid These Bad Habits
It’s easy to fall into bad habits during these times. You’re all cooped up alone and there’s nobody there to judge you for your decisions. But whatever you do, avoid the temptation to increase alcohol consumption or drug use. Even if you think they’re temporary, these habits that will stick with you well after quarantine comes to an end.
Make the Most of Your Current Situation
As CNBC reports, “A new study published in The Lancet found that quarantine is linked with post-traumatic stress disorder symptoms, confusion and anger — with some research suggesting these effects are long-lasting.”
Even if you’re in a low-risk category for COVID-19 complications, you have to be mindful of your health during these unique and challenging times.
You can’t control external circumstances. You can, however, control your response to these circumstances. Make the most out of your time in quarantine by practicing smart and healthy habits that leave you in a better position tomorrow than you are today.